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R.O.D the TV
"A Christmas Carol"
Episode10
Episode no. TV 10
Airdate November 1, 2003 (Japan)
December 9, 2004 (US)
Year 2006
Episode chronology
Previous episode "Heart of Darkness"
Next episode "Goodbye Japan"

Episode SynopsisEdit

After a stressful Christmas party, Nenene Sumiregawa is invited to a second and more private one. The sisters' past is also revealed.

Extended SummaryEdit

Nenene is sorting her mail when she finds a letter with no address nor postmark (simply addressed to "Nenene Sumiregawa"). On the back are some pictures, but it's mostly blank, Anita King suspects that it's an invitation. Nenene blows it off as a prank as the sisters secretly glance at an ashamed Michelle Cheung, who rescues the mysterious invitation.

Nenene looks at another party invitation - to an award party for new writers on Christmas Day. This is the award that launched Nenene's writing career. She doesn't want to go, but after mentioning writers (which hooks Maggie Mui and Michelle) and food (which hooks Anita), Nenene decides to go.

At the party Nenene meets Lee Linho, who comments on how at ease Nenene is with the girls. She is about to give Lee something when he's called away. Nenene finds a seat, pleased to see the girls enjoying themselves, when she is approached by Haruhi Nishizono and her staff team. She promotes her book and TV program to Nenene and asks Nenene to give her advice whenever she needs it.

The new winner, Aoi Takai, is giving a speech thanking the group for the award, which reminds Nenene of her debut ten years ago. Afterwards she is found by another authoress ("Komuro-sensei"), who reprimands Nenene for her writing. The room gradually gets quieter as Nenene is reprimanded for her lack of recent writing until Lee interrupts. Lee is taken outside to cool off for his perceived insult to the other woman.

Anita meets Lee outside, who tells him what he did was "cool". Inside, Nenene gives a speech, talking about how writing and the award changed her life. She also announces that she's writing a new novel, something that she earlier told Lee that she wouldn't do, as an indirect thank you for standing up for her. Afterwards, Nenene gives Lee a Christmas present, a Zippo lighter.

On the way home, Michelle asks Nenene if she'd like to attend another party, holding up the "prank" invitation she rescued earlier. A snowflake falls and melts on the card, revealimg the location: Nenene's apartment. They get home to find it darkened and decorated. Maggie brings out a birthday cake, and the girls ask if Nenene will celebrate their birthday with them. Nenene is surprised that they share a birthday and asks for the story.

On Christmas Eve, two years ago, the girls first met. It starts with Michelle and Maggie meeting before a mission. The two are coincidentally reading the same book: "Story of a giraffe with shrunken neck", by Ben Wilson. They also realize that they are both Bibliophiles and Papermasters.

The pair break into a church and find a hidden storeroom: unfortunately, it's full of fake books. Michelle comments that Dokusensha used them to find the books, but Maggie is frustrated, unsure about why they are here in the first place. They meet Anita, who ran away from her foster parents and is hiding out in the church. She asks to join them, but Michelle says no.

The girls part their separate ways, wondering about what Christmas is to them and why they can't celebrate it like normal people, Anita sleeping in the church, Maggie wandering in a crowd, and Michelle in her apartment with books.

Michelle returns to the church the next day. She gives Anita a book ("Story of a giraffe with shrunken neck") and asks Anita to stay with her. Maggie arrives too, giving Anita the same book and her scarf so Anita can stay warm. Michelle proposes that they be sisters and stay together, and they write their initials on a statue (M.A.M).

When the scene returns to the present, Anita is arguing over the veracity of the story, claiming that she didn't cry that much, but Michelle and Maggie refute her. Anita turns to Nenene, who is in tears over the story and tries to cover it up with a weird laugh.

The episode ends with Nenene energized and typing as the sisters sleep.

TriviaEdit

  • The new novel Michelle reads is by Pierre Kurata, a nod to creator Hideyuki Kurata. Haruhi later calls out to him.
  • The award that Nenene first won 10 years ago and what the party is for is the "Best New Teen Writer Award".
  • Haruhi Nishizono is also a previous winner of this award.
  • It could be guessed that much of Haruhi's behaviour, which Natsume mimics, is really her staff team's suggestion.
  • Haruhi's staff team consists of a manager, assistant, coordinator, and supporter.
  • Nenene's present of a Zippo lighter is symbolic: she heard from Haruhi's editor that Lee wouldn't smoke until she finished her next novel. Lee copes with his withdrawal by chewing on pens.
  • Like Yomiko, Michelle appears to use all of her senses to "sense" a book (see volume 1, chapter 1 of the R.O.D manga).
  • Michelle reveals her knowledge of Dokusensha's rivalry with the British Library by her remark about the books being replaced.

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